Light-Producing Sea Dwellers
Many undersea creatures have systems, like fireflies, through which they can produce light. Generally, they use this ability in order to confuse or scare their enemies. Comb jellies are delicate creatures just like jellyfish and sea anemones. They generally feed on microscopic plants and tiny sea animals. Some catch their prey using their sticky tentacles which move in the water like fishing lines. Other varieties have very wide mouths that can swallow many creatures, including other comb jellies. Comb jellies have tiny hairs on their bodies which they use to move forward in the water. In addition, nearly all comb jellies have special light-producing cells along the seam-like ridges of their bodies. Some species have their own interesting characteristics. For example, the red comb jelly flashes when it is touched. At the same time it pours sparkling luminous particles into the water as a protective method to repel its enemies.12
Creatures like starfish, sea urchins, and featherstars are called "echinoderms." Most of the surface of their skins is covered with sharp spikes which they use for self-defense. They live on the seashore among coral reefs and on the sea bed. These creatures produce their own light to protect themselves from their enemies. They may have luminous arms or spines or be able to pour clouds of light into the water when attacked by a predator.
As seen above, the light-producing mechanisms of creatures, too, are examples of the magnificence in Allah's creation. Allah is the Originator, the Incomparable.
They say: "(Allah) hath begotten a son" :Glory be to Him.-Nay, to Him belongs all that is in the heavens and on earth: everything renders worship to Him. (Surah Al-Baqara, 116)
To Him is due the primal origin of the heavens and the earth: When He decreeth a matter, He saith to it: "Be," and it is. (Surah Al-Baqara, 117)
Design in Dolphins
For dolphins, breathing is not a reflex, as it is for humans and other land mammals, but rather a voluntary movement.14 In other words, dolphins decide to breathe like we decide to walk. There is also a precaution taken in order to prevent the animal's being drowned while sleeping in water. While sleeping, the dolphin uses the right and left hemisphere of his brain in turn, at approximately 15-minute intervals. While one cerebral hemisphere sleeps, the dolphin uses the other to come to the surface for air.
Dolphins breathe using their lungs just like other mammals, which means they cannot breathe in the water like fish. For this reason, they routinely come up to the water's surface to breathe. On the top of their heads is a hole enabling them to do just that. The bodies of dolphins have such a perfect design that, when it dives into the water, this hole is automatically closed by a cap, thus preventing water from leaking into the dolphin's body. When the animal comes up to the water's surface, the cap then reopens.
The snout of the dolphin's beak is another design facilitating the movements of the animal through water. By means of this structure, the animal uses less energy in cutting through the water and swimming at higher speeds. Modern ships, too, make use of a bow like the dolphin's snout, hydrodynamically designed to increase the speed of ships just like dolphins.
In addition, dolphins can swim at such great speeds that they dazzle scientists. There is a smooth flow of water around the bodies of dolphins. Research carried out on the skin of dolphins has discovered the reason for this flow. The skin of a dolphin consists of three layers. The outer layer is thin and very elastic. The middle layer is mostly composed of connective tissue and it has appendages looking like a plastic brush which anchor the outer layer to the middle layer. The third, inner, layer consists of bundles of elastic fibers. Therefore, when turbulence begins to form in the water around the speedily swimming dolphin, the outer skin transmits the extreme pressure caused by this turbulence to the inner layers and they absorb it. Thus, the turbulence that was beginning to develop disappears before it was able to grow.15
All of these structures, ones exclusive only to dolphins among all other animals, are clear evience of an intelligent design. Allah has created dolphins, like all other creatures, with their body structures in conformity with their surroundings.
An Interesting Undersea Creature: The Nudibranch
The nudibranch, a type of marine slug species lacking a shell, has a very interesting design and marvelous, bright colors. Their bodies are rather soft. Although they don't have a shell to protect themselves, and many creatures find their appearance attractive, only a few feed on nudibranches. This is because their striking colors warn predators that they are very poisonous.
One striking characteristic of this sea slug is that it has "stinging cells." By means of these "stinging cells," nudibranches easily protect themselves against their enemies. What is more interesting is that they don't produce these cells themselves. Nudibranches feed on creatures called hyroids that contain stinging cells. But they can eat these creatures' tentacles without triggering their stinging cells thanks to a special mucus in their digestive system. They store these weapons in frilly projections of their bodies. When disturbed the cells fire, thus stinging potential predators.16
Without a doubt, it is not possible for a nudibranch to know that hyroids are poisonous but will not harm them and will, on the contrary, provide them with protection against their enemies. It is also not possible for it to learn such a thing by experiencing it. How then did nudibranches discover this fascinating protective method?
At this point, a truth that reveals itself openly in the universe appears once again before us. The One Who inspired nudibranches to attract attention both with their pattern and color diversity, Who also supplied them with their methods to obtain poison, and created a system in their bodies by which to render the poison of hyroids ineffective, is Allah, the Lord of the entire universe. Allah creates all creatures with very different characteristics and in various colors. What befalls man who sees the infinite power of Allah in such examples is to glorify Allah and to practice good morals for the pleasure of Allah only. Allah informs us in His verses as follows:
And mankind and beasts and livestock are likewise of varying colors. Only those of His servants with knowledge have fear of Allah. Allah is Almighty, Ever-Forgiving. (Surah Fatir: 28)
The Parrot Fish's Sleeping Bags
The parrot fish covers its body, particularly at night, with a gelatin-like substance. Let's have a look at how this substance is produced and utilized. Parrot fish produce this substance in order to protect themselves at night against outside effects. This substance protects the fish against nocturnal hunters. In addition, it enables the fish to camouflage itself.
First, this gelatinous mucus is secreted in glands that are located at the upper edge of the gill cavity, while the fish breathes. After a while, this gelatin-like covering envelops the fish's whole body. The most essential function of this transparent sleeping bag is to protect the fish against moray eels, which are among the greatest enemies of parrot fish. Moray eels have an extraordinarily sensitive sense of smell, and they find their prey using this skill. However, owing to this protective sheath, morays cannot pick up the scent of this fish, and do not notice it even if they strike it while passing beside it.17
Considering this remarkable mechanism, one must wonder, how did the parrot fish ever come by this protective sheath they use at night? How could they discover such an important material which interferes with the morays' sharp sense of smell and enables them to spend the night in protected comfort?
It is inconceivable to expect a fish to think up and plan to produce a substance in its body and then cover its body with this substance. In addition, it is not possible either for such a formation to have come into existence on its own over time. If a parrot fish cannot plan to produce such a substance with its own intelligence and form such a system in its body by means of its own will, a parrot fish that lived 10,000 years ago would not have been able to do these things either.
A fish's body's being covered with gelatin in order to camouflage it from its enemy in an appropriate way is a very skillful thing. It is obvious that such a feature can come into being only as a result of an intelligent design. This intelligence belongs not to a fish or any other creature but to Allah, Who has created and fashioned all of this.
That is Allah, your Lord! there is no god but He, the Creator of all things: then worship ye Him: and He hath power to dispose of all affairs. No vision can grasp Him, but His grasp is over all vision: He is above all comprehension, yet is acquainted with all things. (Surah Al-An'am 102-103)
The Scorpion Fish's Camouflage
Have a look at the scorpion fish in the picture. You will notice right away how difficult it is for the eye to visually discriminate them from their surroundings.
Scorpion fish live mainly on the sea floor in temperate or tropical zones and never venture out into the open sea. They are carnivorous and feed on smaller fish. Their long, fan-shaped fins are an excellent deterrent to the fish's enemies, and its red-and-white stripes make it difficult for their prey to see them among the corals. The scorpion fish has a very colorful appearance. But since the corals it lives in are also very colorful, it easily hides among them. It decreases its chances of being a prey. It also allows it to get close to its own prey easily.18
It is very difficult to distinguish most undersea creatures, like scorpion fish, from the environment in which they live. The presence of these creatures becomes clear only when they move. These creatures which camouflage themselves under the sea in a perfect way also use their colors to hunt, reproduce and send messages. How, then, did this harmony originate? Who has made the body of a fish the same color as the rock where it lives and even given it the same protuberant appearance as the rock? And who has given a shrimp the colors of sea plants? It is impossible for any chemical processes occurring by chance or any other factor to give these creatures the color of the environment they live in.
It is also impossible for a fish, shrimp or crab to be aware of the concept of color and to produce systems that make color changes in themselves. Such a thought cannot go beyond mere imagination. Designing such a system, placing this system into creatures, making arrangements in genes to make it possible to transfer it from generation to generation, and coding all the information in the cells of creatures can be done only by the owner of a superior power.
The Owner of this superior power is Allah. Allah created all creatures together with the traits they possess. Allah draws our attention to this fact in the following verse:
Does He not know those whom He created? He is the All-Pervading, the All-Aware. It is He who made the earth submissive to you, so walk its broad trails and eat what it provides. The Resurrection is to Him. (Surat al-Mulk: 14-15)
12-Anita Ganeri, Creatures That Glow, Marshall Editions, London, 1995, p. 28.
13- Anita Ganeri, Creatures That Glow in The Dark, Marshall Editions dev., 1995, s. 16
14-Betty Mamane, “Le Surdoue du Grand Bleu,” Science et Vie Juniour, August 1998, pp.79-84.
18- Marco Ferrari, Colors for Survival, Barnes and Noble Books, New York, 1992, p.123.